With more than one million people a year dying from malaria transmitted by mosquitoes, researchers at UC Davis and the University of Arizona have been trying to create a breed of mosquito that will not transmit malaria. Of course, not every breed of mosquito is a vector (transmitter) of malaria. In Maryland only one species of mosquito found in Maryland is known to transmit malaria. Since most of the malaria deaths occur in Africa, it appears that efforts would be to introduce the “malaria proof” mosquito into Africa with the hopes that it will become dominant and will breed out the mosquitoes that breed malaria.
The efforts to dominate the malaria vectors would not have any impact on vectors of other diseases, such as West Nile Virus,Yellow Fever and various forms of encephalitis which have occurred in Maryland.
The good news is that the UC Davis and University of Arizona researchers have received awards for the progress in their efforts. The bad news is that even if they are successful in making this “malaria proof” mosquito dominant, it will take at least 10 years to do it.